PASSAIC, NJ --The New Jersey SPCA removed hundreds of rare and exotic birds from the back of a second-hand clothing store in Passaic Monday morning.
More than 220 birds were found inside the Maribel Secondhand Shop on Market Avenue in what officials are calling a hoarding situation.
The owner reportedly had Cockatiels and Conure parrots in a back room measuring approximately 8 by 10 feet.
Concealed in a small space tucked in the back of the store, their songs and calls seemingly fell on deaf ears until the Passaic County SPCA recently received a tip that led to the discovery.
"What we have here is a hoarding case that's turned into a rescue," the SPCA's Luis Vazquez said.
The birds were said to be in dirty cages and mostly in need of love and care.
"We have some that are injured now, so they're going to need a little TLC," said Yvonne England, of Ruffled Feathers Parrot Rescue and Sanctuary in Hempstead, Maryland. "We're going to re-home the Cockatiels and maybe some of the Conures."
The birds are now being transported and cared for at a variety of sanctuaries both inside and outside of the state until they can find forever homes.
After interviewing the bird's owner, officers say they do not believe this is a case of neglect or cruelty, and no charges have been filed.